Wednesday turned in a shocker of a performance as they went down 3-1 at Championship new boys Burton Albion on Tuesday night.
We were hit by the absence of the injured Tom Lees at centre back and then saw his replacement, Jose Semedo, limp off just before half time. However, that does not allow for a performance that lacked pace, cutting edge and belief as we failed to cope with the direct and aggressive style of a Burton side who were well worth the three points.
They had already troubled us on a couple of occasions before Kyle McFadzean shot Albion ahead at the far post with only seven minutes played.
Gary Hooper equalised six minutes later from the penalty spot after what appeared to be a shirt tug on Steven Fletcher but that was only a short-term reprieve, with the Owls largely continuing to play second fiddle to the hosts.
Then, when Semedo had to go off on the stroke of half-time with what looked like a hamstring injury, Burton took full advantage by scoring almost immediately as Jackson Irvine rose almost unchallenged to head home.
Fernando Forestieri replaced Almen Abdi at the break, the striker returning on the bench after his refusal to play at Norwich, but he – along with the rest of his team-mates – failed to make much of an impression and it was Burton who continued to look the most likely to score again.
Keiren Westwood made a brilliant save to deny Tom Naylor and Barry Bannan drew an excellent stop from Jon McLaughlin at the other end. However, that was a rare effort from Wednesday and Burton completed their well-deserved victory 13 minutes from time when the unmarked Lloyd Dyer smashed home their third from close range.
It was a performance reminiscent of away defeats at MK Dons, Charlton and Bristol City last season and Carlos Carvalhal – along with the fans – will want and expect a big improvement against Leeds on Saturday.